It could be that there is so little bicycle infrastructure around Waterloo Region that any improvement is like manna from heaven.
Or it could be that I am just easily amused.
But I was pretty enthused about the changes to Block Line Road between Strasburg Road and the new bridge at Courtland. For a distance of several kilometres (actually, all the way from Westmount Road), there is clear bicycle infrastructure.
Here's the look from the exit of the Forest Glen Plaza, just before Strasburg Road.
This is just a continuation of the painted on-street bicycle lane that begins at Westmount.
Moving along past Strasburg, you can see where the on-street bike rises up and joins the now-paved pedestrian walkway along Block Line.
And there are clear markings separating the pedestrians and cyclists.
I did a half-dozen "person-on-street" interviews, asking people from various age groups and genders what they thought about the changes. Responses ranged from "This is a big improvement" to "It's interesting." One gent said, "I can't ride my electric bike here!"
Really interesting is what appears to be a crossride at the top of Country Hills Drive.
There is no signage yet explaining what should happen here, but based on my own ride through it, I think most motorists are going to understand.
The bike lane continues on the multi-use trail to Homer Watson Boulevard, where riders are encouraged (like, there's not an alternative unless you remain on the road), to use the pedestrian crosswalks to cross the street, and continue on the Block Line multi-use trail to the roundabout in front of St. Mary's High School. Then you can rejoin the on-street bike lane to Courtland, where, as mentioned in an earlier post, the bike lane dead-ends at one of the busiest streets in the area. Good luck you two-wheelers.
On the way back, there's another crossride at the mouth of Kingswood Drive.
Since that is a busier intersection, with traffic lights, and a fair amount of traffic turning right off Block Line onto Kingswood, and turning right out of Kingswood onto Block Line. It will be interesting to see how motorists interact with crossriding cyclists here.
The multi-use trail divides again before it reaches Strasburg, sending bicycle traffic back to an on-street bike lane.
And then, there is a "through" bike lane at the light at Strasburg Road, separating the right-turning vehicular traffic from the through lane.
I'm looking forward to seeing how the bicycle community uses, or abuses, this new infrastructure.